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Sven Vahsen (University of Hawaii) – Directional Dark Matter Searches via Charge Cloud Tomography
March 29, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
With WIMP-nucleon scattering limits approaching the neutrino floor, and coherent neutrino-nucleon scattering experimentally established, there is renewed interest in directional detectors as a means to penetrate the neutrino floor. The CYGNUS collaboration aims to deploy multiple gas Time Projection Chambers (TPCs) to accomplish this. I will review recent R&D work carried out within CYGNUS, with a focus on efforts at the University of Hawaii. I will discuss recently deployed directional neutron detectors capable of imaging the 3D surface shape of nuclear recoils with high resolution. These existing detectors represent a stepping stone towards larger detectors capable of providing fully tomographic 3D images of nuclear recoils. I will discuss how 3D recoil imaging is relevant to dark matter detection by enabling several new measurement techniques. Time permitting, I will also discuss a conceptual design study that compares the suitability of different technological approaches to a large-scale nuclear recoil observatory with sensitivity to both WIMP dark matter and neutrinos.